The IOM Regional Office for the EEA, the European Union and NATO (RO Brussels) was established in September 2011 at a time when the Treaty of Lisbon (2009), European Union (EU) enlargement, and deeper cooperation had reinforced the centrality of migration and asylum policy. Prior to 2011, the IOM office in Belgium had both country and regional functions. In this context, the Regional Office in Brussels set out to advance IOM’s global objectives through strategic partnership with the European Union institutions, EU Member States and other countries in the region to promote a migrant-centered, rights-based migration management approach and work with states to respond to migration issues including complex crises, socio-economic challenges, and mixed flow movements.
Today, our work is guided by IOM's Migration Governance Framework’s (MiGOF) principles and objectives, which aim to facilitate orderly, safe and regular migration and mobility of people through planned and well-managed migration policies, and the European Economic Area, Switzerland and the United Kingdom Regional Strategy 2020-2024.
RO Brussels supports policies, programmes and operations that pursue the well-being of migrants and societies through a rights-based approach to the governance of human mobility, to, from and within the region, which is coherent, holistic and balanced.
The Regional Office acts as IOM’s liaison and coordination office to the European Union (EU) and NATO and other key Brussels-based stakeholders. We support our 28 IOM Country Offices in the region and IOM Offices worldwide on EU-related policy, programmes, legislation and cooperation and resource management.
We engage in a broad range of areas at the regional and global levels, as depicted in our work.
The Regional Office also hosts centralized projects such as the EU Readmission Capacity Building Facility (EURCAP) and the Mainstreaming Migration into International Cooperation and Development (MMICD), and IOM's global Mental Health, Psychosocial Response and Intercultural Communication section.
IOM engages with a wide range of strategic partners from different sectors. Partnerships are established in the areas of policy development, programme implementation, research and advocacy:
- EU institutions
- National Governments and national administrations
- UN Agencies
- Trade Unions
- Business sector
- Academia and think tanks
- Regional and international organisations
- We are working towards
We are working for results where European policies and programmes lead to:
- Inclusion and social cohesion for migrants, communities and societies in Europe;
- Safe and ethical labour migration in policy and practice;
- Improved access to assistance, care and protection for migrants in vulnerable situations;
- A more sustainable “integrated approach” to migrant reintegration that addresses the unique situation of the returning migrant, the host community and country of origin;
- Conditions for migrants and diasporas to fully contribute to sustainable development everywhere;
- Prevention, preparedness, principled response and long-term solutions that all address the mobility dimensions of crisis situations in the EU;
- Increased protection space that demonstrates the EU’s solidarity with affected populations and shared responsibility with host countries;
- Efficient and effective EU support to third countries to address all aspects of mobility and to foster resilient societies;
- Return policies that respect migrants' rights in Europe and in partner countries;
- Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration (AVRR) is built into national return frameworks regardless of migrant nationality or their individual legal status;
- Development and implementation of a comprehensive, rights-based EU Integrated Border Management framework;
- Safer and more regular migration to the EU.